Saturday, February 03, 2007

NewsBank Hot Topics: February 2007

You can research any of these hot topics using NewsBank. Lansing Library card required.

HOT TOPICS - February 2007


See more information on these topics in NewsBank's Special Reports


TOPIC: Congress is working on a non-binding resolution showing disapproval of the president's military policy in Iraq. What does a non-binding resolution do? What specifics of Bush's policy does the resolution object to?

SEARCH TERMS: military strategy AND Iraq

ECONOMICS - Minimum Wage Legislation

TOPIC: One of the bills currently in congress is a bill to raise the minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.25. What issue has divided business owners over support for this bill? What incremental plan does this bill outline for the wage increase?

SEARCH TERMS: minimum wage

ENVIRONMENT - Scientists Testify about Global Warming Reports

TOPIC: Congress is investigating allegations that the White House has pressured scientists to downplay their findings on global warming. What has been the testimony of scientists at the congressional hearings? What two watchdog groups filed the initial report on this?

SEARCH TERMS: global warming AND scientists

FILM AND TELEVISION - Golden Globe Awards

TOPIC: The Golden Globe Awards have been presented. Who were the big winners? How do these awards differ from the Academy Awards?

SEARCH TERMS: Golden Globe Awards



TOPIC: Israel's cabinet has approved Raleb Majadele as the first Arab Muslim minister of the Jewish state. What is the significance about this approval?

SEARCH TERMS: Israel AND government officials AND Muslims


TOPIC - There is a trend towards center-right governments being elected in Europe, and the countries involved are forming their own coalition within the European Union. What are the reasons for this trend?

SEARCH TERMS: Europe AND conservatism

CIVICS, GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS - Presidential Campaign 2008

TOPIC: Many people have declared their candidacy for the U.S. presidency. Who are the Democrats that are seeking the nomination? Who are the Republicans?

SEARCH TERMS: presidential election (2008)

CRIME AND LAW - Advertising Stunt

TOPIC: A Cartoon Network TV show promotion has caused a disruption especially in one particular city. What show was being promoted? Why did it cause a disruption? What city was most affected?

SEARCH TERMS: Cartoon Network

CRIME AND LAW - England and Sharia Law

TOPIC: According to a recent poll, a growing number of young Muslims in Britain are more in tune with Islam and favor the installation of Islamic law, Islamic dress for women and their own religious schools. What are the reasons for this change?

SEARCH TERMS: England AND Islamic law

ECONOMICS - Venezuela Nationalizations

TOPIC: In an effort to convert his country to his own brand of "21st century socialism" Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez intends on nationalizing the country's power and telecommunications companies. American companies stand to lose the most. How will this move affect foreign investment? How will it affect economic and international relations?

SEARCH TERMS: Venezuela AND nationalization

EDUCATION - Wisconsin School Cell Phone Ban

TOPIC: Wisconsin's largest school district has decided to ban the student use of cell phones. What is the reason for the school to adopt this policy and how is it different from the reasons other cities have banned school cell phone use? What city dominates the district?

SEARCH TERMS: cellular telephones AND schools AND bans

HISTORY - Stonehenge

TOPIC: Excavations near Stonehenge have uncovered dozens of homes where people lived at the same time Stonehenge was erected. What is Stonehenge? When was it built? What is the mystery surrounding this structure? What is the significance of this new find?

SEARCH TERMS: Stonehenge

HISTORY - E. Howard Hunt

TOPIC: One of the key members of the Office of Strategic Services (O.S.S.), E. Howard Hunt has died. What is the organization that developed out of the O.S.S. What was Hunt's role in that? What government scandal was Hunt involved in during the mid-1970s? What was his role?

SEARCH TERMS: E. Howard Hunt

INTERNATIONAL - British and Saudi Arms Deal

TOPIC: British fraud investigators have stopped a probe into a multi-billion pound arms deal with Saudi Arabia. Why have they stopped their probe? What will happen to this deal?

SEARCH TERMS: England AND Saudi Arabia AND bribery AND arms sales

SOCIAL ISSUES - Black Panthers

TOPIC: Former Black Panthers Ray Boudreaux and Henry Jones have been arrested for the 1971 murder of San Francisco police sergeant John V. Young. Who were the Black Panthers? What have been the recent political activities of these two men?

SEARCH TERMS: Black Panthers AND arrests


ENVIRONMENT - Ganges River

TOPIC: Indian holy men threatened to boycott a major religious festival, in which millions of people wash away sins in the Ganges river. What are their reasons? What can the government do to clean and then prevent future pollution?

SEARCH TERMS: Ganges River

HEALTH - Center for the Intrepid

TOPIC: A new high-tech center for the medical rehabilitation of Army soldiers injured in Iraq has been built outside of San Antonio, Texas. What spurred the need to build this facility? What have become common injuries seen in this war?

SEARCH TERMS: Center for the Intrepid

SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY - Pakistan Installs Biometric System

TOPIC: Pakistan introduced along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border a biometric computerized control system. What is this system? Why is it needed?

SEARCH TERMS: border control AND biometric technology


TOPIC: Microsoft Corp. has just released its new software called Windows Vista. What does this software do? What has been the customer response?

SEARCH TERMS: Microsoft Corp. AND product introductions


SPORTS - Lovie Smith and Tony Dungy

TOPIC: The Chicago Bears and the Indianapolis Colts will be playing in this year's Super Bowl and coaching these teams will be Lovie Smith and Tony Dungy. What distinguishes these coaches from Super Bowl coaches in the past? What team did both of these men once coach for?

SEARCH TERMS: Lovie Smith OR Tony Dungy

SPORTS - Bennie Parsons

TOPIC: Former NASCAR champion Bennie Parsons has died. What major races did Parsons win? What years did he win? What career change did Parsons make after retiring from racing?

SEARCH TERMS: Bennie Parsons

SPORTS - Tiger Woods and Roger Federer

TOPIC: Both Tiger Woods and Roger Federer have had very strong years in their respective sports - golf and tennis. What has been the relationship between these two men? How is each one ranked in his respective sport?

SEARCH TERMS: Tiger Woods AND/OR Roger Federer

SPORTS - Barbaro

TOPIC: The racehorse Barbaro has been euthanized due to the ongoing pain of poorly healing fractured bones. What awards and honors did Barbaro win in his career as a racehorse? What tragedy did Barbaro suffer that so moved the feelings of horseracing fans?

SEARCH TERMS: horse racing AND animal euthanasia


FILM AND TELEVISION - Actress Helen Mirren

TOPIC: Actress Helen Mirren has won several awards recently for playing a queen. For what other roles is she known?

SEARCH TERMS: Helen Mirren


TOPIC: France's Louvre Museum has joined a project to create a satellite of the museum in the United Arab Emirates capital Abu Dhabi. What has been the reaction of the French to this project? Will the economic advantages to the museum make the project worthwhile?



TOPIC: Dan Saxon Palmer, designer of the modernist tract home, and consequently the look of many of the early Southern California suburbs, has passed away. What decade were Palmer's homes most dominate? What other states saw a lot of Palmer's homes built in their suburbs?

SEARCH TERMS: Dan Saxon Palmer

LITERATURE - Harry Potter

TOPIC: The date for the next Harry Potter book has been announced. When will it be released? What is its title? What is special about this book?

SEARCH TERMS: Harry Potter

LITERATURE - Sidney Sheldon

TOPIC: Author Sidney Sheldon has passed away. In what other mediums did Sheldon's work appear other than books? Who were Sheldon's biggest fans? Why?

SEARCH TERMS: Sidney Sheldon

PERFORMING ARTS - Smoking in the Theater

TOPIC: State and local smoking laws have had a unique impact on theater performances. Plays that have characters and scenes where smoking is a central aspect have objected to having these laws imposed. What constitutional right have some theaters invoked to defend the right of actors to smoke onstage? What cities have seen these lawsuits?

SEARCH TERMS: smoking AND theater


PEOPLE - Lauren Nelson - Miss America

TOPIC: Lauren Nelson has won the title of Miss America. What state is Miss Nelson from? Why is that state significant in this year's win? Where does this famous pageant now take place and where was its original location?

SEARCH TERMS: Miss America

PEOPLE - Art Buchwald

TOPIC: Famous political and humor columnist Art Buchwald has passed away. What was notable about his work? What was unique about the way Mr. Buchwald chose to spend his last months?

SEARCH TERMS: Art Buchwald

PEOPLE - Ban Ki-moon

TOPIC: New U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has pledged to complete much-needed reforms at the United Nations. What does he propose to do? Will he be effective in bringing reform to the UN? Will he make the UN a stronger player in problem areas though out the world?


PEOPLE - Alan Leong

TOPIC: Lawmaker Alan Leong is a candidate to be chief executive of Hong Kong. What is unique about Leong's candidacy? What candidate is his primary competitor?


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